A Mitten Getaway

Why I keep this blog going is anyone’s guess. Back in the Google Blogger days, it documented my sub-par attempts at training for and racing endurance cycling events, however with age, medical issues, a complicated relationship with my bike, and a raging case of depression-inspired slack, it has degraded into I don’t know what. 

Blogging Times once referred to The Soiled Chamois as “unintelligible sophomoric word salad dotted with the occasional photo that doesn’t completely suck, written by a careerless, unlikeable misanthropic middle-class white guy.” 

All I’ll say about that is that if Blogging Times was a real thing, and I didn’t completely make their disparaging comments up, they would not be wrong. Yet here we are.

And now that we are here, I will say it’s been a minute since I last posted, mostly because I have barely left the house this month for anything other than a couple snowshoe hikes, groceries, and beer. Even I’m not bored enough to write about driving to the store for Hopslam! However, this past weekend I reluctantly agreed to a weekend trip up north to Lake Ann, Michigan, with Wifey and mid-Michigan power couple, the Brookensesses. So now I have something to make the aforementioned word salad with. 

We drove up Friday morning and settled into our rental crib within stumbling distance of the Lake Ann Brewing Company. Once unpacked, we snacked on some nutritious ring baloney and cheese before heading out for a snowshoe up the Empire Bluff Trail.

The views were amazing, and the size and breadth of Lake Michigan’s waters were as inspiring as ever.

After soaking in the view, we headed back down the trail and then made a short drive into Empire and visited the beach. There were no polar plunges.


Once back to the Yellow House, we relaxed with some cockle-warming mulled wine before changing and heading out for some beers and live music in the brewery’s heated outdoor tent.


While enjoying the tunes and brews, we ordered some grub from The Stone Oven restaurant next door. The brewery and the restaurant are two separate businesses, but they work together to make the ordering and pickup process easy. I had the pepperoni pizza, and it was damn tasty and the perfect companion to the deliciously hoppy Jungle Fungus IPA.

Once back to the house, I made a semi-successful attempt to seduce Wifey in our Hobbit bedroom upstairs before getting some rest for Saturday’s adventures. 

We were up early Saturday morning for bagels and coffee before heading out for a snowshoe up the Pyramid Point Trail and an even more stellar view of ice blue Lake Michigan. The sun was shining, the water was a deep blue, and if not for the cold winter breeze coming off of the lake, I could have stayed up there all day soaking in the amazing views.



Soon it was time for my lunchtime feeding, so we drove into Glen Arbor and got food at Art’s Tavern

The food and atmosphere of Art’s was spot on. I had a tasty cheeseburger and a nice hot and spicy cup of chili (served every day!) along with a well-poured pint of Guinness, while Wifey enjoyed a grilled cheese, fries, and hot cocoa with a splash of Bailey’s. The Brookensesses also kindly shared their basket of batter-dipped onion rings; so good!! 


As tavern food goes, the food at Art’s is way above average. The prices are too, but comparable to most places in the areas for sure.

With a belly full of fried food, we headed back to The Yellow House to chill out and fight the urge to nap before returning to the brewery later that night for another round of great beer, food from The Stone Oven, and the musical stylings of The Bourdains.


We were back in the house by 10 to chat and gab before heading to bed. Oh, the lives of quinquagenarians out on the town.

Sunday greeted us with the realization that our short getaway was now over. We cleaned up the Yellow House as per the owner’s instructions, had some breakfast, and then headed back to Mt. Pleazy.

I fully admit that I had nothing to do with the idea, planning, or executing of this little trip, but it was nice to get out of town and break up the monotony of January. Big thanks to the Brookensesses for being fun travel companions, as usual, Wifey for all the planning, and B, who stayed home and cared for the dogs while we were away. 

Now there’s nothing left to do but sit back and hope that none of our jabbed and boosted asses brought COVID back as a souvenir, which after two years, I have dwindling fucks to give.


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